Monday, March 15, 2010

Demons @ The Byrd

The historic Byrd Theatre in Richmond is at it again, holding another screening of a cult classic from the 80's. In the past year they've featured rarities like Lucio Fulci's Zombie and Dark Night of the Scarecrow. Now they are serving up another top tier zombie movie at midnight on April 17th in the form of Lamberto Bava's (Mario's son) Demons. I've seen this one several times over the years, and it is one of the most stylish and fun films of its kind. Certainly a high watermark of 80's zombie cinema (more watchable than Romero's Day of the Dead, although that is a fine film in its own right). What's particularly interesting about this one is that the setting of the film is a perfect fit for The Byrd. The story involves a group of people invited for the screening of a new horror movie in an old theater. During the course of the film, through the use of a cursed mask, the attendees start turning into zombies. Technically I guess they are being taken over by demons, hence the title, but the net result is the same. Either way watching this setup in The Byrd will be particularly creepy.


4 comments:

Daniel said...

This sounds like a load of fun! I missed the Zombi showing so maybe I can redeem myself with Bava's "Demons". A weekly rental it seemed back in the day. I was just getting into Italian horror when this one hit the shelves and the cover of Fangoria magazine. Is this a midnight showing?

Jim Blanton said...

It's a midnight showing . . . and it's hot on the heels of the anniversary Fantasmo the night before (talk about crazy timing : ) Great movie though - definitely one of my favorites from the 80's!

cinematheque said...

Great fun movie. I also watched The Church. Is it meant to be in the same series? I tried to catch Argento at the International premiere of Giallo last year, but he never turned up. Actually nobody involved with the movie did which I thought was pretty weird but probably just part of the Giallo style means of film production.

I wrote a little about giallo (and other cult film) on my little blog, you might be interested, if so please take a look.

http://cinematheque.leithermagazine.com/2010/04/07/retro-reviews-%e2%80%93-giallo-a-darker-shade-of-yellow/

Jim Blanton said...

You're absolutely right about The Church, it was the third installment in the Demons series. I don't think either of the sequels quite measured up to the original, but they are still pretty fun. That is weird about the premiere no show. Argento took a lot of grief over Mother of Tears, so maybe he's keeping a low profile.

Best, Jim